The nicest thing about having two cats is watching them hang out together. Holly and Thunder have a routine: Holly will walk up to Thunder and sort of shove her head into his face, he’ll start to groom her, and she’ll purr so loudly that I can hear her across the room (proving that you don’t need to be human to activate Insta-Purrâ„¢). Sometimes Thunder will initiate these sessions, but it’s always Thunder grooming Holly, never the other way around. This always struck me as a little odd, because Holly was 8 years old when I brought a tiny ten-week-old Thunder home for the first time; you’d think the adult cat would groom the kitten, not the other way around.

Holly spent several hours at one vet’s office last Monday and most of the day at another last Tuesday. At home after each of those visits, Thunder would approach her in slow motion, sniff her, hiss, and back away. Things have been improving since then, but now whenever Holly tries to get Thunder to groom her, he’ll just walk away. It’s kind of heartbreaking to watch her go to her cat friend for comfort only to be rejected. I’m not sure whether he’s just reacting to her vet visits or whether he senses that there’s something more deeply wrong.

The two cats do seem to be perfectly relaxed near each other now, so I’m somewhat hopeful that things will get back to normal between them. Holly has another vet appointment tomorrow, though, so I expect another temporary setback before that happens.


11 thoughts on “Rejection

  1. Gail

    I had a thought (not really related to this post specifically)… have you considered acupuncture? Mary Jane and Marcia had a cat with cancer that they recently had to have put to sleep, but for months before that they regularly took her to acupuncture, which the cat didn’t seem to mind and which relieved her pain.

  2. lisa@notesfromafrica

    When Callie (our previous cat) was sick, our dog at the time also reacted like this to her. I thought at the time it was because of the visits to the vet, and the smells she picked up there. But I also noticed that the dog would hang out with her a lot more. Almost like she sensed Callie wasn’t doing well and needed support.

      1. Laura Post author

        I’m not sure how this will work with Thunder. He may instinctively want to avoid getting too close to a cat who’s sick.

    1. Laura Post author

      They go for their annual checkups together, but during the year, there’s usually at least one occasion where one of them will need to go alone. Thunder’s always a little afraid of me when I take Holly to the vet.

  3. Kristen

    I appreciate this info! My 14 yr old love of my life orange tabby was just diagnosed with a nodule in his lung and I’m heartbroken but looking for info as to what awaits me. The vet says I may only have a couple months left with him and I’m going to cherish every moment and I hope to choose the best time to end his suffering without cheating both of us of any remaining time together.


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